US SAILINGâ€™s Olympic Sailing Committee has chosen two exemplary sailing coaches for the 2010 Coaches of the Year Awards. Based on nominations from the public, the OSC has named Greg Wilkinson, of Rockport, Massachusettes, the National Coach of the Year and Jay Kehoe, of Annapolis, MD, the Developmental Coach of the Year. These two winners exhibited extraordinary dedication to the sport of sailing and made an impact on the sailors they coached in 2010.
Known for his energy, humor, teaching skills and work ethic over the past 17-plus years as a coach, Jay Kehoe of Annapolis has inspired a generation of youth sailors ranging from the St. Petersburg Yacht Club Optimist junior program, Sunfish/Laser educational programs, Yale Universityâ€™s sailing program, U.S. Merchant Marine Academyâ€™s sailing program to Stanford Universityâ€™s sailing program. For the past two years he has served as Annapolis Yacht Clubâ€™s Waterfront Director, transforming the marina and junior sailing programs into models for other clubs across the country.
In his estimation, Kehoe said that he has coached over 1,000 junior sailors, but his biggest professional achievement has been, at one time in their careers, a coach to five members of the 2008 U.S. Olympic Sailing Team: Zach Railey, Stu McNay, Andrew Campbell, Amanda Clark and Charlie Ogletree, who Kehoe also coached with the Team Pegasus Farr 40 team.
At the Annapolis Yacht Club, in the summer of 2009, Kehoe created innovative programs to provide AYCâ€™s youth sailors a transition from Optimist racing to competitive international events. Within the first year of the Kehoe introducing the I-420 class program, one of the teams, Brady Stagg and Jack Ortel, qualified for the world championship where they placed 27th. Stagg also joined Fletcher Sims to finish as the top international team in 9th place at the 2009 U.K. I-420 National Championship, in Haifa, Israel.
The goals of the Coaching Recognition Program are to recognize the tremendous accomplishments and contributions coaches make to sports at all levels of athlete development and to elevate the status of coaching as a profession. The winners of the USOCâ€™s coaching awards across all sports will be honored at the 2011 National Coaching Educatorsâ€™ Conference.